William B. Gray, D.O., 79, of Cowen, passed away peacefully on Saturday, April 18, 2015 at home, surrounded by family. Bill was born in Richwood on Dec. 16, 1935 and was the first son of Walter and Vell Bennett Gray.
As a teenager Bill was inspired to pursue an education in osteopathic medicine by his uncle, John N. Kurish, D.O. After graduation from Cowen High School in 1954, he went to West Virginia University for pre-med and was accepted at Kirksville (Mo.) School of Osteopathic Medicine (now AT Still University) in 1957.
"Dr. Bill" marks the end of the era of house calls, as he served the Cowen area as a physician in private practice from 1962 through 1998, when he retired. He also acted as Webster County Health Officer from 1971 to 1998 and served on the Webster County Board of Education. Bill was a member of Trinity UMC and UM Men, Camden-on-Gauley Masonic Lodge No. 107, where he served as the Worshipful Master from 1985 to 1986, Camden-on-Gauley Chapter No. 161 Order of the Eastern Star, where he served as Worthy Patron from 2000 to 2001, a 50-plus year member of the Cowen Lions Club and the West Virginia Society of Osteopathic Medicine, where he was recognized as the Practitioner of the Year in 1995. Bill also supported the building of the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg.
Bill is survived in death by his wife of 59 years, Charlene Smith Gray; brother, Max and Greta Gray of Little Rock, Ark.; son, Edward and Dana Gray of Fairmont; daughters, Janet and Mike Mathes and Barbara and Mike Ritchie, both of Cowen; grandchildren, Jacqui and Ty Boyce and Amanda and Gareth Markwardt, both of Tucson, Ariz., Laura and Dana Snyder and Matthew and Lorena Ritchie of Cowen, Chad Mathes, Ryan and Jamie Mathes, both of Nicholas County, and Daryl Lynne and John Cruse and Alex Gray of Morgantown; 10 great-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews; and devoted caretaker, Annette Clevinger.
Memorial service will be held at noon Saturday, April 25, at Trinity United Methodist Church, Cowen. Friends may join the family for visitation one hour prior to the service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg or Trinity United Methodist Church of Cowen.